PARIS (Alliance News) - The European markets are trading lower on Wednesday afternoon, erasing early gains, ahead of the release of minutes from the Federal Reserve's June policy meeting later in the day.
On a day of light economic news, latest survey figures from Halifax showed UK house prices fell more-than-expected in June, after rising strongly in the previous month.
The house price index dropped 0.6% from May, when it climbed 4%. Economists had forecast a 0.3% fall. The latest decline was the biggest since March, when prices decreased 1.2%.
Chinese consumer prices inflation slowed in June from a 4-month high, as food prices increased at a slower rate, a report from the National Bureau of Statistics showed. Nevertheless, the increase was slightly below the consensus estimate.
Consumer prices increased 2.3% year-on-year in June following the 2.5% increase in May. Economists had expected prices to rise 2.4%.
The Euro Stoxx 50 index of eurozone bluechip stocks is gaining 0.24%, while the Stoxx Europe 50 index, which includes some major UK companies, is falling 0.10%.
The German DAX is marginally lower. The French CAC 40 and Switzerland's SMI are losing 0.2% and 0.3%, respectively, while the UK'sFTSE 100 is declining 0.60%.
In Frankfurt, Adidas is declining 2.6%. The sportswear giant is said to be nearing a kit sponsorship deal with English football club Manchester United, outbidding rival Nike, Inc.
HeidelbergCement is losing 2.4%. Goldman Sachs cut the stock to ''Neutral'' from ''Buy.''
ThyssenKrupp and Deutsche Boerse are falling 1.8% and 1.1%, respectively.
Bucking the trend, Commerzbank and Deutsche Bank are in positive territory. JPMorgan raised Deutsche Bank to ''Overweight'' from ''Neutral.''
Gerry Weber is gaining close to 5%. The clothing & footwear firm was upgraded to ''Buy'' from ''Hold'' at Berenberg.
In Paris, Safran is losing 3.3%. Michelin is losing 2% and Alstom is falling 1.7%.
Lenders Societe Generale and BNP Paribas are falling 2% and 1.6%, respectively. JPMorgan cut BNP to ''Neutral'' from ''Overweight.''
Catering services firm Sodexo cut its full year revenue forecast. The stock is declining 2.1%.
In London, Admiral Group is falling 6.4%. The insurer issued a trading update.
Aviva is declining over 4% after it announced new targets to support its business strategy for a turnaround.
Hargreaves Lansdown and Next are losing 2.8% and 2.3%, respectively.
Seadrill is gaining 3.6% in Stockholm. The company decided to cancel a planned USD1 billion 2019 maturity convertible bond issuance.
The Asian stocks fell broadly, with worries over deflationary pressures in China and mounting concerns over a sharp slowdown in Europe weighing on the markets.
In the US, futures point to a cautious open on Wall Street. US stocks fell for a second day in a row Tuesday as investors positioned themselves for corporate earnings reports. The Dow and the S&P 500 slid about 0.7% each, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq fell 1.4%.
Crude for August delivery is losing USD0.10 to USD103.30 per barrel, while gold is gaining USD8.2 to USD1324.7 a troy ounce.